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Music for a saxophone concerto Leggatt, Jacqueline 1996

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M U S I C F O R A S A X O P H O N E C O N C E R T O By JACQUELINE LEGGATT B.Mus., Queen's University, 1985 M.Mus., University of British Columbia, 1990 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF DOCTOR OF MUSICAL ARTS (COMPOSITION) in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (School of Music) We accept this thesis as conforming Txr\,the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA April 1996 ® Jacqueline Leggatt, 1996 In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission. Department of The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada Date' fifpJt A l % DE-6 (2/88) Abstract Music for a Saxophone Concerto is a nineteen minute w o r k for solo B b soprano saxophone, string orchestra and percussion. It contains three movements w i t h a n Interlude between the first and second movements and is performed without breaks between movements. The discussion o f Music for a Saxophone Concerto begins w i t h a detailed analysis o f the piece. E a c h movement is examined for its large and small-scale form, its p i tch structure, and its l inks w i t h other movements or sections i n the piece. Nex t , the title is discussed since it is not traditional and serves to distance the listener f rom traditional concerti and make them question their assumptions when they sit d o w n to l isten to a saxophone concerto. F o r this reason, i t is important to discuss brief ly the Baroque , Romant ic , and twentieth-century concerto to determine i n w h i c h ways m y piece w o u l d frustrate or compl iment a m o d e m listener's expectations. T h e concept o f partnership is most obvious i n the Baroque concerto and i n neo-c l a s s i c a l works o f the twentieth century ( l ike Stravinsky's Violin Concerto). T h e idea o f opposing forces is more c o m m o n i n the Romant ic per iod and twentieth century as exempl i f ied by Beethoven's Piano Concerto #5 and Schoenberg's Violin Concerto. W h i l e Music for a Saxophone Concerto ut i l izes a Baroque dance i n the first movement, i t is neither a real partnership nor a relationship between conf l ic t ing characters, but rather seeks to use the concept o f the soloist as ' i nd iv idua l ' and the orchestra as 'society' i n a w a y that demonstrates their complete integration. F o r this reason, contrasting textures, instrumentation, orchestration, and forms have been chosen w h i c h a l l , i n different ways , experiment w i t h idea o f the soloist and orchestra as mutual ly inc lus ive . The use o f saxophone w i t h strings is a continuation o f a r i c h saxophone concerto tradition but the choice o f soprano saxophone is less traditional and thus, wi th the title and many o f the formal details, leads the listener to an appreciation o f the possibil i t ies inherent i n an anti-concerto. i i Table of Contents Abstract i i Table o f Contents i i i L i s t o f Figures i v Instrumentation v Score o f Music for a Saxophone Concerto 1 First M o v e m e n t 1 Interlude 19 Second M o v e m e n t 26 T h i r d Movemen t 60 Di scus s ion o f Music for a Saxophone Concerto 80 Introduction 80 A n a l y s i s o f Music for a Saxophone Concerto 81 O v e r v i e w 81 Firs t M o v e m e n t and Interlude 84 Second M o v e m e n t 88 T h i r d Movemen t 93 Music for a Saxophone Concerto as Ant i -Concer to 96 C o n c l u s i o n 101 Bib l iog raphy 102 i i i List of Figures Figure 1 F o r m o f Music for a Saxophone Concerto 83 F igure 2 C h o r d Progression A 83 F igure 3 C h o r d Progress ion B 85 F igure 4 F o r m o f the Firs t M o v e m e n t 85 F igure 5 V i o l a C o l o u r i n Section A 89 F igure 6 V i o l a Talea i n Section A 89 F igure 7 V i o l a Co lou r , bars 131-132 89 F igure 8 V i o l a Co lou r , bars 132-134 90 F igure 9 V i o l a Co lou r , bars 138-141 90 F igure 10 V i o l a Co lou r , bars 141-144 90 F igure 11 Saxophone Talea i n Section A 90 F igure 12 Saxophone and So lo V i o l i n Talea i n Sect ion B 91 F igure 13 V i o l i n I and II Ta lea i n Sect ion B 91 F igure 14 'Ce l l o and Bass Ta lea i n Sect ion B 91 F igure 15 Reduc t ion o f Bars 242-243 92 F igure 16 F o r m o f T h i r d M o v e m e n t 93 i v Instrumentation S o l o B b Soprano Saxophone" 2 percussionists: Vibraphone M a r i m b a T impan i W o o d b l o c k V i o l i n s I V i o l i n s II V io l a s V i o l o n c e l l i Contrabasses * T h e saxophone part is transposed i n the score o f Music for a Saxophone Concerto. In the discussion o f the piece, reference to saxophone notes w i l l a lways be made i n concert p i tch . v Music for a Saxophone Concerto J a c q u e l i n e L e g g a t t J = 55 Bb Soprano Sax Percussion I Percussion II Violin I Violin II Viola Cello Contrabass m con sordino (2 mp con sordino mp con sordino m : mp' con sordino mp con sordino 3^3 -fS>-- f S - -- i M —B motor off/pedal * vibes town bowed vibes hroughoui _ —i M w__j , M — •• t&4= • -p-© 1996, Jacqueline Leggatt sax pere I pere [I \JL - | j 1 r-1 — ffi ' f \L 1 . . . — . . . . . — -4 vin vin II via vie bass 11222 -2-12 sax Itlf sempre pere I pere II - f S > -v In I vin II via vie bass 33 24 sax pere ! pere II " — 1 •—-— 1—-—• -— — - — ——-—— J§5 1 i ' r " — ' —* vln vln II via vie bass P 5 — t 1=3 J 3 3 3 ^ 53: zzz: E3-30 sax pere I pere II ' jr*-- +• • fiM= - j p — -=! f S M = = cm 1 1 1 \-\J \ 1 1 p vln I vln II 3E£ 3 ^ 3 ^ via vie bass §3= 2 E 42 sax pere I pere II =j=- = h 9 - P ' - " 1 P —~ 1 1 1 ( —I— m vin vin II in £ 3 £3 via vie bass izzz: I E -p--9-sax 54 pere pere II m vln I vln [I 3 ^ 2 via vie bass -10-60 sax pere I pere II vin I vin II H E 3=B m vie bass | | | m -61--11--12--13-78 "f" 1 pere I pere II vin i * 1 m m 121 vin II 3 E 3=^ via 1 ^ $ 3 p m vie bass -14--15-- 1 6 --17--18--19--20-116 -21--22--23--24-128 -25--26--27--28--29--30-cresc vin •In II 3CE o o ~TJZ - O — In II via t ' J J ' J J " i l cresc tot Let vie bass 7 i 7 -31--32--33-174 '£1 sax 2 (8"0-o vin I vin II vin II - o t i t Q Y Y r, krj vie bass ^ T - t o -X E 7 V lJ~ t t i r > o o # " i -34--35--36--37--38--39--40--41--42-sax vin I vin II vin II via vie bass -43--44--45--46--47--48--49--50-- 5 1 --52--53--54-J -55-239 sax 3EE2EE s. vln vln I vln II (Qva). 7 ? J ; ft I?* .0 vie bass 3 241 J = J /2 "ft - f f i 7 y P 7 sax s. vln vln vln i l 3 E ( 8 ^ ) -0^0 a x W . J ? t i v k bass •-0^=>~+'—+ - 5 7 --58-257 sax s. vin L $ Af, «, v * « fi fi « M ~ 0 ~ >— rJr, fi .. ^ -'if-* • i r j -' h» l ) l» - l» fi "p 1 1 y \ i T n 260 •ir r ! -» = r p ^ 7 1 7 i r— ' - • J — J m • r • > ~ * > = f e U J L J — r - * — f — n f r ^ f ' / 7 ^ ^ | • -4—QL-^ K" ts" J71 : if J Lj u [ — I ttf ' U —p sax s. vin 263 sax . vin no ritard or diminuendo I f , > » i > J t i l l I in»— : H h attacca -59-•60--61-282 -62-•63--64-•es-•67--68--69-•70--71--72--73--74--76--77--78-367 via pcrc I r-ft _JS .O„ . . : r -- : ; — f- — | i i ! pedal down ! Dur: 19 minutes Discussion of Music for a Saxophone Concerto Introduction T h e discussion o f Music for a Saxophone Concerto begins w i t h a detailed analysis o f the piece. E a c h movement is examined for its large and small-scale form, its p i tch structure, and its l inks w i t h other movements or sections i n the piece. Nex t , the title is discussed since i t is not traditional and serves to distance the listeners f rom the traditional concerto, prompt ing them to question their assumptions when they sit d o w n to listen to a saxophone concerto. F o r this reason, i t is important to discuss br ief ly the Baroque, Roman t i c , and twentieth-century concerto to determine i n w h i c h ways m y piece w o u l d frustrate or compl iment a m o d e m listener's expectations. T h e concept o f partnership is most obvious i n the Baroque concerto and i n neo-c l a s s i c a l works o f the twentieth century ( l ike Stravinsky's Violin Concerto). T h e idea o f opposing forces is more c o m m o n i n the Romant ic per iod and twentieth century as exempl i f ied by Beethoven's Piano Concerto #5 and Schoenberg's Violin Concerto. W h i l e Music for a Saxophone Concerto ut i l izes a Baroque dance i n the first movement, it d isplays neither a real partnership nor a relationship between conf l ic t ing characters, but rather seeks to use the concept o f the soloist as ' ind iv idua l ' and the orchestra as 'society' i n a w a y that demonstrates their complete integration. F o r this reason, contrasting textures, instrumentation, orchestration, and forms have been chosen w h i c h a l l , i n different ways , experiment w i th idea o f the soloist and orchestra as mutual ly inc lus ive . The use o f saxophone w i t h strings is a continuation o f a r i c h saxophone concerto tradition but the choice o f soprano saxophone is less traditional and thus, w i th the title and many o f the formal details, leads the listener to an appreciation o f the possibi l i t ies inherent i n an anti-concerto. 80 Analysis of Music for a Saxophone Concerto Overview Music for a Saxophone Concerto i s a three-movement w o r k w i t h an Interlude between the first t w o movements and is scored for solo soprano saxophone, string orchestra and two percussionists. T h e first movement consists o f bars 1-109, the Interlude bars 110-130, the second movement bars 131-266, and the third movement bars 267-377. There are no breaks between the movements and the total duration is nineteen minutes. Because o f the d i v i s i strings i n the second and third movements, a string orchestra compr i s ing at least s ix first v i o l i n s , s ix second v i o l i n s , four v io las , four c e l l i , and two basses is needed al though an idea l size w o u l d be 12-12-8-8-4. T h e percussion instruments are vibraphone, mar imba , t impani and w o o d b l o c k . T h e percussion wr i t ing i n this piece is typica l o f m y percussion style i n general. M a n y composers use a large variety o f different instruments when they write for percussion but I have a lways preferred a smal l number. In this way , each instrument is used extensively, and the combinat ion o f instruments is chosen to give a particular sound without a large contrast i n t imbre w i t h i n a movement. F o r example, i n the first movement , both percussionists b o w a single vibraphone and stand on either side o f the instrument so that the 'white keys ' are b o w e d by percuss ion 1 and the 'black keys ' by percussion 2. T h i s sound complements the string chords and the he ld C o f the saxophone so that the whole first movement is made up o f long , sustained sounds. In the Interlude, the percussionists move to t impani , woodb lock , and mar imba so the contrast is achieved by m o v i n g f rom a bowed metal sound wi th a l ong decay i (in the first movement) , to a brittle (mainly) w o o d sound i n the Interlude. The second movement has no percussion and the third movement is scored for struck vibraphone and mar imba . In this movement, the metal and w o o d sounds are combined but they p lay a very 81 s imilar texture and the vibraphone plays without pedal or motor w h i c h reduces the perception o f t imbra l difference (see bars 318-341). T h e string wr i t ing i n the first movement is legato, c o n sordino, and the tessitura is a lways w i t h i n four octaves. In the second movement , the mutes are removed , the tessitura is expanded, and a detached texture predominates unt i l bar 242 when solo v i o l i n and saxophone p lay staccato. In the third movement, the string wr i t ing becomes less traditional, the tessitura i s expanded to the furthest possible l imi t s , and many contrasting textures are used. F o r example , l o n g he ld notes that m o v e f rom pp toff (bars 267-279), rhy thmic unison (bars 287-289, 308-312, 336-340)) , complex counterpoint (bars 290-302), h igh-pi tched staccato l ines p layed ve ry q u i c k l y (bar 305), and long legato l ines (bars 360-375). S i m i l a r l y , the, saxophone wr i t ing moves f rom being very s imple to be ing gradually more complex and contrasting. In the first movement, the he ld C requires the performer to c i rcular breathe o n a single p i tch at mf for almost six minutes. The second movement contains l y r i ca l saxophone wr i t ing throughout and the third movement includes the saxophone wi th in many different textures; rhy thmic unison w i t h the strings (bars 287-288), staccato w i t h vibraphone and mar imba (bars 328-340), and l y r i c a l solo passages (bars 341-360). T h e saxophone is used p r imar i ly i n its midd le and h igh registers; the l o w register was avoided for reasons o f balance. The fo rm o f the who le piece is best described as a gradual crescendo and the effect is one o f m o v i n g by degrees f rom a very static texture i n the first movement w i t h chordal strings and the he ld C i n the saxophone, to a more busy texture i n the third movement where contrasts are sudden and textures are varied. Besides texture, the tessitura, dynamic range, rhy thmic and pi tch complexi ty , and smaller-scale formal organization also articulate this gradual crescendo. P i t ch and fo rm w i l l be discussed i n detail later but it is important to note that the piece moves f rom a generally consonant pi tch organization ( in the first movement) to one that is extremely dissonant ( in the third) and that the fo rm o f each movement is sectionalized into increasingly smaller sections as the piece progresses w h i c h helps give the impress ion o f increased activity. 82 L i k e w i s e , dynamics m o v e f rom a constant state i n the first movement to the use o f a steady There are several passages for solo string instruments i n this piece: the Interlude is for solo double bass w i t h percussion accompaniment; i n the second movement , solo v i o l i n and saxophone p lay a duet (bars 242-266); and i n the third movement (bars 267-377) , solo v i o l i n , v i o l a , ' ce l lo and bass dominate the opening and, w i t h the saxophone, c lo s ing measures. Howeve r , the most predominant use o f a single vo ice texture occurs i n the Interlude and i n the opening measures o f the third movement (bars 267-270) when solo v i o l i n and v i o l a p lay over lapping statements o f a he ld B . Thus , the gradual crescendo is not constant, but is broken up by sections o f less act ivi ty and/or intensity. H o w a l l these elements w o r k together is best v i ewed i n a diagram: F igure 1 F o r m o f Music for a Saxophone Concerto crescendo i n the second movement to the use o f large contrasts i n the third movement . T i m e : 0:00 6:00 7:25 13:10 19:00 Tex ture : m i d d l e range 5-part texture r j. tessitura expanded F o r m : A - A ' - A A - B - A ' A - B - C - D - E Sec t ion : I Interlude II III 83 First Movement and Interlude T h e first movement (bars 1-109) is based on two Baroque forms; the chaconne and the sarabande. Consequent ly it is s low, i n triple t ime, wi th the emphasis on the second beat o f the bar, and i t contains a repeating bass me lody and chord progression. T h e string texture is bas ica l ly 4 parts (soprano, alto, tenor, bass); the first v i o l i n s p lay the soprano part, the second v i o l i n s p lay the alto part, the v io las p lay the tenor part and the ' ce l l i and basses p lay the bass part. E a c h vo ice i n the 4-part texture has a repeating interval pattern that is different f rom the other vo ices (see F igure 2). Figure 2 C h o r d Progression A 4 - 2 .. . 4 + 2 i . T - 2 . „ h o l d . 1-2 t - 2 . , 4 + 2 1 -X ^ T 'J ^ + 2 r ' J ? 9-^=2 7 7 i +2 £ ? T - 3 o ^ — ? - t — T - k - f -\l+2 ^ 1+2 3 t + 2 jL 1 —2 9-|l 1 a-i—1 r, ^—TT, *-a "3 7 1 +2 * 4> — Z (J 2-rrord £ ? T - 2 " >t« - z / J 1-2 T+2 1-2 Thus , chord progression B w i l l begin wi th D i n the bass, D i n the tenor, F * in the alto, and F i n the soprano and then the ensuing chords w i l l be generated according to the interval pattern out l ined above (see F igure 3). B y using this pattern, mot iv ic unity is maintained i n each part wh i l e the type o f chord is constantly changing; the first chord i n progression A is a C major chord wi th added sharp-1 w h i l e the first chord i n progression B is a D major chord wi th added natural-3 and the 5th omitted. 84 Figure 3 C h o r d Progress ion B \ !\ \ \ i T h e entire first movement can be d iv ided into 8-bar phrases. The first statement o f chord progression A occurs i n bars 1-8 and is then repeated i n bars 9-16 and 17-24. C h o r d progress ion B occurs i n bars 25-32, and then i n bars 33-40 the upper strings repeat progression B w h i l e the basses return to A material . In bars 41-48 the second section begins by stating progression A . T h e next generation o f the progression (C) occurs i n bars 49-56, progression D occurs i n bars 57-64 and then i n bars 65-72 we hear progression C i n the upper strings w h i l e the basses return to B material . Bars 73-105 contain the return o f the opening material al though this t ime i t is shortened. Bars 73-80 have progression A , bars 81-88 have progression B , bars 89-96 have progression B i n the upper strings and A i n the basses, and bars 97-104 have the last statement o f progression A . The first movement is therefore a clear three-part f o r m w h i c h can be symbol i zed by the letters A - A ' - A . F igure 4 F o r m o f the Firs t M o v e m e n t section A A ' A location bars 1-40 bars 41-72 bars 73-105 chord A A A B B A A C D C B A B B A A progressions 85 T h e midd le section is not heard as contrasting (hence A ' ) because the texture, dynamics , rhy thm, and p i tch organization has remained the same; on ly the type o f chords change. There are numerous tonal impl ica t ions i n this movement. In progression A , the first and second v i o l i n parts are bas ical ly i n G minor , the v i o l a part is i n A major, the ' ce l l i and bass are i n C minor , and the vibraphone plays a descending B major scale. A l t h o u g h this may sound cacophonous on paper, the saxophone's he ld C against the C m i n o r i n the bass make this the most prominent tonal area although i n subsequent chord generations, this he ld C becomes more dissonant i n relat ion to the string parts. F o r example, i n bars 65-72, the held C is against D m i n o r i n the bass, B major i n the ' ce l l i , C minor i n the v io las , E major/minor i n the second v i o l i n s , and F mino r i n the first v io l i n s . A g a i n , this is m u c h less dissonant than it looks on paper because the repeating interval patterns and steady rhy thm create a feel ing o f uni ty . P robab ly the most s t r iking thing about this movement is the saxophone's he ld C w h i c h w o u l d require the soloist to c i rcular breath w h i l e t rying to maintain the smoothest possible sound for almost six minutes. Because o f the dif f icul ty o f ach iev ing this, I chose the C , an octave above midd le C , as a mid-range note w h i c h w o u l d reduce the diff icul ty o f c ircular breathing. I shal l discuss this static part i n more detail later, but for n o w it is important to note the effect this he ld note has on the listener i n relation to the changing chord progressions mentioned above. A n interesting aspect o f this he ld C is that it is co loured by the chord progressions around it as it, i n turn, colours the chords and brings out different tonal areas (or emphasizes a C tonal area as i t moves between voices) . So this he ld C is sometimes consonant, sometimes dissonant, and wh i l e i t is steady and unchanging, at the same time subtle changes do take place i n our perception o f the C as the chord progressions are constantly shifting around it. Ano the r interesting aspect o f this he ld C is that sometimes it ceases to be perceived as being there. Th i s might change i n l ive performance wi th the difficulties inherent i n c i rcular breathing and wi th the v i sua l ly very present soloist i n the centre o f the stage, but i n 86 sequenced versions, this C seems to melt into the background at some times and appear more prominent at others. T h e Interlude (bars 110-130) that fo l lows the first movement is scored for solo double bass, t impani , mar imba , and w o o d b lock . Th i s interlude creates an effective bridge between the first and second movements i n several ways. M o s t importantly, it breaks the static texture o f the first movement w i t h a melody that, i n its l imi ted tessitura (octave plus perfect 4th) prepares for the v i o l a me lody i n movement two. Secondly , the t impani , mar imba , and w o o d b lock provide an effective contrast wi th the b o w e d vibes and legato strings heard previously; thirdly, i t creates the effect o f movement wi th in a single-voice texture that is perceived as acceleration after the repetitive first movement , and fourthly, the l o w , solo double bass sound is a we l come contrast to the saxophone's he ld C . T h e Interlude both begins and ends wi th jff t impani . W i t h i n this frame the double bass plays a me lody that alternates between stepwise mot ion and leaps based on the interval o f a perfect 4th/5th. T h i s me lody reaches a highpoint at bar 124 w i t h the bass's F * and the percussion accompaniment , and then a short denouement fo l lows . 87 Second Movement T h e second movement (bars 131-266) already exists i n a vers ion for B b soprano saxophone and piano entitled Girls In Their Married Bliss w h i c h is dedicated to Ju l i a N o l a n w h o gave i t its premiere performance w i t h C h e r y l Pauls on M a r c h 3, 1994. It was also performed i n its present vers ion for B b soprano saxophone and strings on M a r c h 10, 1994 w i t h Ju l i a N o l a n and the U B C Chamber Strings under the direct ion o f E r i c W i l s o n . It is i n ternary f o r m ( A = bars 131-211, B = bars 212-241 , A ' = bars 242-266) , the tempo (quarter note =112) is faster than the first movement and Interlude, andithe m o o d is quite l ight and humorous . T h e first A section (bars 131-211) consists p r imar i ly o f a 2-voice texture i n the saxophone and v io las . T h e upper strings p lay long he ld notes w h i c h enter i n a staggered fashion and s l o w l y accumulate unt i l a 7-part chord is present (bar 170). Consequent ly , the strings are d iv ided ; there are 2 first v i o l i n parts, 3 second v i o l i n parts, and 2 'cel lo parts. The basses p izz ica to throughout this first section; their p izz ica to notes are taken f rom the viola 's me lody and, i n turn, introduce the notes that are held by the upper strings. F o r example , i n bar 131 the bass's C introduces the he ld C o f the ' c e l l i , i n bar 133 the bass's A b introduces the he ld A b o f the second v i o l i n s , i n bar 135 the bass's B b introduces the he ld B b o f the ' c e l l i , etc. Th i s pattern is generally adhered to, but not r i g id ly so; once a l l seven notes o f the upper string's chord have been introduced, their l ines move according to voice- leading pr inciples and are not a lways introduced by the p izz ica to basses. T h e opening A section's v i o l a part is organized isorhythmical ly wi th a colour and talea as i l lustrated i n Figures 5 and 6. ' 88 Figure 5 V i o l a C o l o u r in A Section - v /L ?r» ™ ° C ° ** > « > — C «> Figure 6 V i o l a Talea i n A Section J — J — J — — J — J H — The talea is maintained throughout the opening section but the co lour is arranged accumulat ively i n pa l indromic structures so that the entire colour is not stated unt i l bars 141-144. F o r example , i n bars 131-132 on ly the first three notes o f the co lour are used (see F igure 7) . In bars 132-134, the first f ive notes are used (see F igure 8) and, as i n bars 131-132, the notes are stated pa l indromica l ly . In bars 138-141, a l l notes except the f inal C are introduced (see F igure 9) , and f ina l ly , i n bars 141-144, the entire co lour is stated for the first t ime (see F igu re 10). F igure 7 V i o l a Co lou r , bars 131-132 ^-Et 1— 1—w 0 j 89 Figure 8 V i o l a Co lou r , bars 132-134 m - j )t9 4J-7 w w -—w Figure 9 V i o l a C o l o u r , bars 138-141 1 rT'j _-m\-(l ' — \ . m y — it Figure 10 V i o l a Co lou r , bars 141-144 —Kr 0— f—mr-\ >* — —*—0- — T T h e saxophone part is arranged isorhythmical ly i n its talea on ly : F igure 11 \ Saxophone Talea i n A Section I; • sm • *- • tr. The talea o f the saxophone is, obvious ly , the same as that o f the v io las except that it is mul t ip l i ed by three and moves at a different speed so that the v i o l a is p lay ing quarter = 1 1 2 and the saxophone is p l ay ing dotted half = 37.3. The saxophone me lody is freely composed and based o n the c o m m o n intervals o f the viola ' s colour . 90 T h e first section accumulates tension as the rhythms o f the saxophone talea are d iv ided into ever smaller subdivis ions o f the beat and the me lody ascends into the saxophone's upper register w h i l e the string texture thickens w i th the addit ion o f d i v i s i strings. A l l parts crescendo unt i l bar 211 when a sudden 2-bar rest ends the first section and provides a l l the transition employed i n this movement . T h e B section (bars 212-241) begins abruptly at pp and the texture becomes 3 voices; saxophone and solo v i o l i n p lay i n unison, v i o l i n I and II p lay a seventh apart, and ce l lo and bass p lay a seventh apart (starting at bar 222). E a c h vo ice i n the 3-voice texture plays the same pi tch material transposed at T i and the same talea, again at different speeds: F igure 12 Saxophone and So lo V i o l i n Ta lea i n Section B F igure 13 V i o l i n I and II Ta lea i n Sect ion B • ^ • Figure 14 'Ce l l o and Bass Ta lea i n Sect ion B o w W M M W tV fv H 9 H 9 — H I 5 = H J J l4 91 T h e effect is o f three different speeds: saxophone and solo v i o l i n have quarter = 66; v i o l i n I and II have dotted quarter = 49.5; and 'cel lo and bass have quarter note t ied to a thir tysecond = 58. There i s a constantly repeated melody and talea so that the section seems s low, static and non-dramatic. T h e f inal A ' section (bars 242-266) is a canon at the eighth note i n invers ion (see F igure 15) for solo saxophone and solo v i o l i n . F igure 15 Reduc t ion o f Bars 242-243 saxophone at concert p i t c h 4\ O prr~ -O - O p o f » p o - o -solo v i o l i n etc. ffT> 11 vi\2 « o — H i 1 3 The texture has been reduced to two voices and the dramatic tension created by the canon s l o w l y unwinds by the insert ion o f rests i n the saxophone part w h i c h is eventual ly subsumed into the v i o l i n melody . The melodic and rhythmic material is based o n that o f the A section, though without its systematic treatment. T h e movement ends wi th !a single B i n the v i o l i n and three beats rest. ' 1 In the second movement the sections are quite long and the contrast between them extreme i n terms o f texture, dynamics , and rhythm. A few beats si lence is a l l that distinguishes one section f rom another and the second movement f rom the third. Thus , the who le piece is accumulat ing activity as these contrasts and sectionalizations become the pr imary feature o f the third movement . 92 Third Movement The third movement is i n f ive large sections ( A B C D E ) w h i c h proceed largely without development but through contrast o f material , texture, dynamics , instrumentation and orchestration. T h e saxophone does not have the prominent part it enjoyed i n the second movement ; i t is used here, as are most o f the instruments, i n a chamber style. Thus , it is integrated into a large variety o f textures but does not have an outstanding separate role. The d i v i s i strings i n the second movement are further d iv ided i n the third movement into s ix v i o l i n parts, two v i o l a partsl two 'cel lo parts and two bass parts. T h e vibraphone and mar imba are featured i n the third movement; their extremely difficult duet w h i c h precedes sections B and C becomes the m a i n material o f section D and is echoed and accompanied by the saxophone and strings. Therefore, this movement contains elements o f rondo structure: F igure 16 F o r m o f T h i r d M o v e m e n t sections A d B d C D E begins at bar 267 286 287 303 305 3 i 6 341 T h e A section takes the last note o f movement two and uses i t i n long , over lapping statements (see bars 266-276) i n the upper strings. Th i s over lapping B is reminiscent o f the he ld C f rom the first movement . T h e solo strings expand the B outwards by semitone to fo rm a sma l l cluster ( C - B - B b ) at bar 279. A s I w i l l demonstrate, the p i t ch organizat ion o f this entire movement can be described as the accumulat ion o f gradually larger semitone clusters. A t bar 279, the lower strings create a sl ightly var ied texture and expand outwards f rom F to the cluster F * - F - E ( in bar 285) . A t bar 286, vibraphone and mar imba interrupt briefly wi th material that w i l l be developed i n section D . It consists o f a contrapuntal cluster o f D - D b - C . 93 A t the opening o f Sect ion B , a rhythmic unison melody (bars 287-290) gives way to a l y r i c a l , contrapuntal trio for saxophone and two v io l in s (bars 290-296). A l t h o u g h this rhy thmic unison me lody seems l ike a large contrast, it is based on the semitone cluster F * - F -E heard earlier (bar 285). T h e texture i n the B section bui lds w i t h the addit ion o f contrapuntal l ines i n the other strings w h i c h ascend i n range and become rhythmica l ly more active in bars 296-302. S o m e instruments i n this section accompany and sustain others' l ines; for example i n bars 297-302, the saxophone is doubl ing and sustaining the important notes f rom the v i o l a 1 part, v i o l i n 1 doubles and sustains v i o l i n 3, v i o l i n 2 doubles and sustains 'ce l lo 1, bass 2 doubles bass 1 p izz ica to , etc. The dynamics increase t o / at bar 302 and then a s l ight ly longer vers ion o f bar 286 occurs i n bars 303-304 i n the vibraphone and mar imba . Sect ion C (bars 303-315) is the shortest section i n the third movement and contains a cluster that accumulates to a l l the notes except E b - G b - B b by bar 309. In bars 309-312, a tutti, rhy thmic unison, quintuplet figure appears i n a l l instruments w h i c h the vibes and mar imba mainta in (throughout bars 309-315) wh i l e the strings and saxophone descend and decrescendo to silence. In section D (bars 316-341), the vibraphone and mar imba can f inal ly develop the material they foreshadowed i n bars 286 and 303-304. O f central importance here is the pi tch C w h i c h was so prominent i n the first movement. T h e vibraphone reiterates this p i tch over four octaves wh i l e the mar imba creates a contrapuntal cluster around this C by adding first a B (bar 318), then a D b (bar 319) , then a B b (bar 320), then a D (bar 320), etc. In other words , semitones are added to the cluster i n a symmetr ical fashion around C . A t bar 328, the saxophone jo ins the percussion wi th staccato figures that are also clustered around C w h i l e the strings fo rm into two groups wi th clusters that punctuate the texture i n bars 332-341; v i o l i n s 2-4 play a D b - C - B cluster, and 'cel lo 1 and basses p lay a F * - F - E cluster. H i g h strings j o i n the first group and l o w strings j o i n the second group unt i l they a l l co l l i de on the d o w n beat o f bar 341 wi th the loudest, most dissonant cluster o f the piece (al l the notes except E - F - G ) . 94 A t this point a l l instruments stop except the saxophone w h i c h begins the E section. The saxophone holds a C * for 16.5 beats w h i c h recalls its he ld C o f the first movement and then begins a l y r i c a l solo melody that begins to dissipate the accumulated tension. In fact, the entire E section can be seen as a denouement to the movement and the who le piece as the ly r i ca l solo wr i t i ng outlines ever smaller intervals and the piece ends on a single p i tch (G) . F o r example, the saxophone me lody (bars 345-359) is based on the interval o f a major third as is the v i o l i n 1 me lody (bars 360-363) and the 'cel lo melody (bars 364-366). T h e saxophone me lody (bars 369-376) oudines a mino r third, the v i o l i n 1 melody (bars 369-375) outlines a major second, and the last note ( G i n v i o l a 2 and b o w e d vibraphone) is a mino r second above the v io l in ' s last note ( F # ) . Ear l ier , I stated that the whole piece represents a crescendo i n terms o f texture, tessitura, dynamic range, rhythmic and pi tch complexi ty , and smaller-scale formal organizat ion. F o r m a l l y , i t represents a gradual bui ld-up because the first movement (though i n three sections) is based on a single idea, the second is i n ternary fo rm and the third movement is a five-part form. Therefore the music is broken up into gradually smaller b locks o f material w h i c h is perceived by the listener as an increase i n activity. There is also a large-scale p i tch organization; the saxophone's he ld C o f the first movement is surrounded by its o w n semitone cluster i n that the notes o f pr imary importance that f o l l o w the C are the B f rom the end o f the second movement and beginning o f the third movement (see bars 266-276) and the f rom the opening o f section E , third movement (see bars 341-345) . 95 Music for a Saxophone Concerto as Anti-concerto T h e first th ing one notices about this piece is its title. Music for a Saxophone Concerto is not mere ly a 'Saxophone Concer to ' : he use o f the words ' M u s i c for' distances the piece f rom a traditional concerto and i n this way , forces the reader/listener to ask herself w h y i t is not a 'Saxophone Concer to ' . T h i s is a very important act o f dis tancing for m e because this piece both is and is not a concerto. Rather, i t cou ld be said to be an 'anti-concerto' and the title's j o b is to hint at the poss ib i l i ty o f 'anti-concerto' w h i l e i t i s the piece's j o b to ver i fy this concept and to chal lenge the listener's expectations o f a 'concerto'. B u t first, w e should l o o k at just what are a listener's expectations and where this piece satisfies or frustrates them. T h e derivat ion o f the term 'concerto' is unclear. T h e term is poss ib ly f r o m the L a t i n consortip, mean ing 'a fe l lowship or partnership', and poss ib ly der ived from concertare, 'to strive o r contend ' . 1 B o t h o f these ideas are meaningful todayj The Baroque concerto wi th its r i tornel lo forms, use o f contrasting textures and uniformity o f material c o u l d be seen as a ' fe l lowship or partnership' between the soloist (or smal l ensemble) and the large ensemble. T h i s idea obv ious ly inf luenced Stravinsky i n his Violin Concerto in D major; it has four movements w h i c h are a l l based o n Baroque dances, and uses textures, gestures, terraced dynamics , and a chamber- l ike orchestral sound w h i c h are reminiscent o f Baroque music . L i k e w i s e Music for a Saxophone Concerto, i n the first movement , uses two Baroque forms; the sarabande and the chaconne, but the textures, gestures and certainly the saxophone's he ld C does not make one think o f Baroque mus ic . Rather, the repetitive and static nature o f the first movement is meditative i n quality although the amalgamation o f the saxophone wi th the string is a type o f 'partnership'. T h e other meaning o f the term 'concerto' (to strive or contend) is most prevalent today and, indeed, has been so since Mozar t ' s t ime when sonata from pr inciples and the r i tornel lo 1 Henry Raynor, A Social History of Music From the Middle Ages to Beethoven (London: Barrie & Jenkins, 1972), 187. 1 i ; 96 fo rm were combined to create a new and dramatic relationship between the soloist and the orchestra. "The most important fact about concerto form is that the audience waits for the soloist to enter, and when he stops p l ay ing they wai t for h i m to begin again. In so far as the concerto may be said to have a f o r m after 1775, that is the basis o f it . . . .essentially what the c lass ica l per iod d i d was to dramatize the concerto, and this i n the most l i teral ly scenic way-the soloist was seen to be different." 2 In the late Class ica l per iod, the soloist became l ike a character i n a drama w h o interacts w i th the orchestra. T h i s , combined w i t h the rise o f the vir tuoso performer i n the Roman t i c per iod, l ed to the composi t ion o f many concern' where technical acrobatics are featured (as i n L i s z t and Paganini) and the soloist is distinguishable as a s t r iking ind iv idua l against the orchestral mass o f sound. A n d even i n the concert i that were not written by superstars for the d isp lay o f their technical prowess (as i n Brahms ' and Mendelssohn 's Violin Concerti), the soloist retains her indiv idual i ty and technical display remains an important feature. Concer to wr i t i ng occupied a huge number o f composers and performers i n the Roman t i c per iod , most o f w h o m are n o w forgotten and i n the twentieth century, al though its populari ty d imin i shed somewhat, it remained one o f the forms that continued to generate interest amongst s tyl is t ical ly disparate composers. F o r some o f these composers the concerto is largely unchanged f rom the Romant ic per iod and was written for a particular performer or for themselves as a vehic le for vir tuosic display (as i n Prokofiev 's Sinfonia concertante and Rachmaninov ' s Piano Concerti). Others were more experimental i n their use o f form, structure and mus ica l material however the use o f technical acrobatics has remained an integral part o f the concerto and has even been extended in the twentieth century to include h ighly diff icul t w r i t i n g i n the ensemble mus ic and not just i n the soloist's part. T h i s is made obvious by the almost ubiquitous use o f the cadenza (an exception being, as one w o u l d expect, Stravinsky's Violin Concerto) and regardless o f where the cadenza is p laced i n the concerto, i t 2 Charles Rosen, The Classical Style (New York: W.W. Norton, 1972), 196.!; 97 ! is almost a lways an opportunity for vir tuosic display. A n important feature o f Music for a Saxophone Concerto is that it contains no cadenza and this is because I was t ry ing to eschew the concept o f the soloist as an ind iv idua l acting against the orchestra and was thus avoid ing the use o f technical d isplay for its o w n sake. T h e concept o f the soloist and orchestra as embodying a contentious relationship has remained c o m m o n up to the present t ime. The soloist and ensemble are often v i e w e d as adversaries and the drama o f the concerto consists i n the battle between them. M a l c o l m Forsy th , for example , described his Piano Concerto as "a duel and definitely not a duet". 3 In E l l i o t t Carter's Concerto for Oboe, the smal l ensemble "accompanies", the orchestra "opposes" and, w i t h the soloist, the three groups are "associated w i t h contrasting and conf l ic t ing characters". 4 The soloist is often seen not as an i nd iv idua l but as the archetypal individual w h o must battle forces stronger than him/herself. A c o m m o n concept about the ensemble/orchestra i s that it represents 'society' but that 'society' is external to the i nd iv idua l and works to oppress i f not the entire ind iv idua l , than at least that individual ' s vo ice . Th i s concept o f the concerto as dialect ic, as the w o r k i n g out o f conf l ic t ing forces, is precisely what I was t ry ing to avo id i n Music for a Saxophone Concerto. In m y piece, al though the soloist is s t i l l associated w i t h 'the ind iv idua l ' and the orchestra w i t h 'society', I have attempted to posit them as mutual ly inc lus ive . Thus , i n the first movement , the saxophone's he ld C and the strings' chords w o r k together to create a texture where the C is constantly co loured by the chord progressions and the chord progressions are, i n turn, modi f i ed by the he ld C (certain tonal areas take on different functions depending o n their p rox imi ty to C ) . In the second movement , section A (bars 131-211), the two-part texture between saxophone and violas is analogous to a conversation between two people where they are both real ly saying' the same things (their music is based o n the same pi tch material) but are 3 Malcolm Forsyth as quoted in brochure tor Jane Coop and Calgary Philharmonic (CBC Records S M C D 5124) M 4 Eliot Carter, notes for Carter's Concerto for Oboe, brochure for Carter Concerto pour hautbois (Eraro 2292-45364-2 CD) , 98 not real ly l is tening to each other (as exempl i f ied by their different tempi). A s the section progresses, the increase i n activity and dynamic range is l i k e each person i n the conversation compensat ing for not being heard by ta lk ing louder. In the f inal A ' section (bars 242-266) however , they seem to come to an agreement as the saxophone's melody is subsumed into the solo v io l in ' s me lody w i t h i n their canon. In the third movement, there are many smal l sections where an increase i n act ivi ty is achieved through the repetition o f b locks o f mus ic . F o r example , i n bars 335-340, the vibraphone and marimba's mus ic repeats every measure, the saxophone's mus ic repeats every measure f rom bars 332-340, and the clusters i n h igh and l o w strings repeat every measure f rom bars 337-340. Th i s is an accumulat ion o f energy, but i t is a motor-energy and not organic or developmental i n nature. In this way , I have attempted to demonstrate an accumulat ion and dispersion o f energy throughout the third movement , rather than the development o f confl ict and release. The soloist is ful ly integrated into the texture and becomes an integral part o f the third movement but not an opposing voice . E v e n when the saxophone has solo material (bars 341-360) i t is not a cadenza, but rather the beginning o f the denouement section o f the piece that introduces solo wr i t ing i n many instruments. T h e idea o f mus ic as non dialectic i s not new to m y music although it is rare i n a concerto. John Gage was interested i n wr i t ing music that was not p r imar i ly confl ict and release and his Concerto for Prepared Piano and Orchestra i n its use o f aleatoric practices to generate pi tch material comes closest to mine wi th its feeling o f non static-staticness. T h e majority o f twentieth century coricerti however , are more ak in to Forsyth and Carter; the soloist 's ro le is very dramatic, very strong, and the interaction between soloist and orchestra is opposi t ional in character. Af te r stating that Music for a Saxophone Concerto is an 'anti-concerto', it is important to note the ways i n w h i c h it conforms to traditional concerto style. First , it is i n three movements w h i c h has been c o m m o n i n concern' since the Class i ca l per iod , and secondly, the soloist stands at the front o f the stage beside the conductor w h i c h is the standard stage set-up and serves to clear ly differentiate, both aurally and v i sua l ly , the soloist from the orchestra. 99 T h e choice o f soprano saxophone as the solo instrument was made for both practical and ph i losoph ica l reasons. There are many wonderful saxophonists i n V a n c o u v e r w h o are interested i n new mus ic which 1 is , i n itself, the most important reason for me to write a piece. T h e choice o f soprano saxophone also contributes to the idea o f anti-concerto because the soprano saxophone is not a c o m m o n concerto instrument and therefore contributes to the dis tancing o f Music for a Saxophone Concerto f rom traditional concert i . In Londe ix ' s 125 Years of Music for Saxophone, there is not a s ingle example o f a w o r k for soprano saxophone and fu l l orchestra or string orchestra although there are 182 pieces l isted for alto saxophone and fu l l orchestra o r string orchestra. 125 Years of Music for Saxophone is not an up-to-date b ib l iography o f saxophone music (it was publ i shed i n 1971) but it does represent the non-use o f soprano saxophone as a solo instrument wi th orchestra f rom the incept ion o f the instrument to the late twentieth century. A s w e l l , it c learly demonstrates the preference for the alto saxophone as a concerto instrument. In the latest edi t ion (1994) o f 125 Years of Music for Saxophone, approximately 60 pieces are l is ted for solo soprano saxophone w i t h orchestra or band w h i c h reflects the huge populari ty that this instrument has enjoyed i n the last twenty years. A m o n g concert i for alto saxophone, several composers haye used string orchestra i instead o f fu l l orchestra as I have done. Notable examples include Pierre M a x Dubo i s ' Concerto for Alto Saxophone and String Orchestra, G lazunov ' s Concerto in Eb, and Larsson's Concerto for Saxophone and String Orchestra. Obv ious ly , I am not the first to notice that the sound o f saxophone is part icularly suited to string orchestra and thus m y concerto continues a ; j h tradition o f merg ing saxophone wi th string orchestra w h i l e its choice o f soprano saxophone is less tradit ional. 100 Conclusion In conc lus ion , I w o u l d reiterate the dua l meanings o f the term 'concerto' as either a partnership or oppos ing forces. W h i l e Music for a Saxophone Concerto ut i l izes a Baroque dance i n the first movement, i t is neither a real partnership nor a relationship between conf l ic t ing characters, but rather seeks to use the concept o f the soloist as ind iv idua l and the orchestra as society i n a w ay that demonstrates their complete integration. F o r this reason, contrasting textures have been chosen w h i c h a l l , i n different ways , experiment w i t h idea o f the soloist and orchestra as mutual ly inc lus ive . T h e use o f saxophone wi th strings is a continuation o f a r i c h saxophone concerto tradition but the choice o f soprano saxophone is less traditional and thus, w i th the title and many o f the formal details, leads the listener to an appreciation o f the possibil i t ies inherent i n an anti-concerto. There exists performance difficult ies w i th this work since many soloists w o u l d prefer a concerto that displays their technical abilities as a soloist instead o f as an integrated member o f the ensemble. There have been other concern however that have maintained their posi t ion i n the repertoire despite their integrated character ( l ike Ber l ioz ' s Harold in Italy) and, i t c o u l d be argued, that the he ld C o f the saxophone i n the first movement is the height o f vir tuosity and the piece w i l l therefore appeal to many musicians. 101 Bibliography Carter, E l l io t t , notes for Carter's Concerto for Oboe, brochure for Carter Concerto pour hautbois. (Erato 2292-45364-2 C D ) F u b i n i , E n r i c o . The History of Music Aesthetics. L o n d o n : M a c m i l l a n Press, 1990. Grou t , D J . and Pa l i sca , C laude . A History of Western Music. N e w Y o r k : W . W . N o r t o n and C o m p a n y , 1988. L o n d e i x , Jean-Mar ie . 125 Years of Music for Saxophone. Par is : Ed i t ions M u s i c a l e s , 1971. Plant inga , L e o n . Romantic Music. N e w Y o r k : W . W . N o r t o n & C o m p a n y , 1984. R a y n o r , H e n r y . A Social History of Music From the Middle Ages to Beethoven. L o n d o n : Ba r r i e & Jenkins , 1972. Roeder , M i c h a e l . A History of the Concerto. Por t land: A m a d e u s Press, 1994. Rosen , Char les . The Classical Style. N e w Y o r k : W . W . N o r t o n , 1972. Sadie , Stanley, ed. 'Concerto ' f r o m The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, Vol. 4 L o n d o n : M a c m i l l a n , 1980. 1 Sadie , Stanley, ed . 'Saxophone ' f rom The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, Vol. 16 L o n d o n : M a c m i l l a n , 1980. W a t k i n s , G l e n . Soundings: Music in the Twentieth Century. N e w Y o r k : Sch i rmer , 1988. author unlis ted, notes for M a l c o l m Forsyth's Piano Concerto, brochure for Jane Coop and the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra ( C B C Records S M C D 5124) 102 

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